A Glimpse of Marilyn Monroe


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Last weekend saw a trip down to London for my best friend’s birthday. Such a fab evening out to celebrate a very special lady. Before we went out I took the time to hang out with the rents and my lovely sister. We went on a bit of a whim to the National Portrait Gallery, there were two exhibitions that we had a look at… The Royal Family Portraits, “that” picture of Kate Middleton and finally the Marilyn Monroe picture exhibition. All three were really good. Not entirely sure about the Kate Middleton painting but hey she will always be beautiful, I love her 🙂 

Another lovely lady was, of course Marilyn Monroe. I don’t know lots about her life, only really from the film My Week With Marilyn, which by the way is an incredible film. She really is an interesting lady and the photographs on show at the National Portrait gallery are amazing. Lots show her in such natural poses whilst filming or just chilling out with friends and other artists. Others are magazine cover pictures which again show some really beautiful natural poses of a gorgeous lady. 

She clearly had a troubled life and dealt with issues of self-esteem, confidence and self belief. In fact watching My Week With Marilyn made me realise she really was a lady with a lot of issues, drink, drugs and depression. You need to watch it though. Putting all this aside she was an incredibly beautiful lady. Her classic look shaped and influenced so many women and her bleach blonde hair and red lips inspire so many women creating the vintage look. 

I, of course, had to buy a momento to show on the blog. I bought a selection of post cards, here are some of my favourites. Any books that you can recommend on her life please shout. 







CIMG2333 I love how she can do sexy and natural. She really was a true vintage queen 🙂 

CIMG2334CIMG2335 This is definitely my favourite picture of her though, so so so soooooo beautiful 🙂 Do you see how much I like her? hehe..


There’s the classic vintage look.

CIMG2338Not entirely sure why the pictures have suddenly gone blue..!! Sorry but hopefully you have a little glimpse of the exhibition. If you can try and get down there it’s a great way to while away an afternoon. 

Happy vintage hunting, reading and learning about the past. 

Lots of love,

Olive & Emxxxx





Vintage Village £5 Challenge..


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Happy New Year:-) Seems like ages ago now that we were celebrating and watching the fireworks on a little lap top at my parent in law’s house up in Kendal!! Anyway I hope you all had a lovely new year and are enjoying 2013. I am sitting here willing it to snow, as forecast, but I am sure it will only end up being a little bit of drizzle – always is here in Manchester!! 

Anyway so we all love a little bit of vintage fair action but being cash strapped, saving to buy a dream house, and it being just after Christmas. I pondered, how could I have a fun girlie afternoon at one of my fav vintage fairs without breaking the bank.. Well here was birthed the £5 challenge. Find something you love for only £5. It turned out to be so much fun. We: Me, Rachel, Alison, Anna and Ciara made our way down to Stockport’s Vintage Village this afternoon and we found some lovely bargains. 

Stall holders loved the idea of the £5 challenge and one lovely pair, Jemma and Leyla were helping us find bargains on their stall. They really jumped on board and with it being relatively near the end of the day, a little bit of haggling was encouraged. So without further a do, here are the results of the £5 challenge… 

The gorgeous Alison fell in love with this beautiful vintage hat from Jemma and Leyla’s stall. This little number is handmade by Jemma, how clever is she?! It has a gorgeous blue bow on it.. doesn’t she look cute in it? 🙂  Unfortunately they don’t have a website so you will have to pop down to the next Vintage Village to see them. 


The lovely Rachel also bought from Jemma and Leyla too, getting this lovely handbag for a steal at £5. She haggled it down from £6. Well done Mrs. Such a gorgeous bag 🙂 Rachel also may have spent a little more on a beautiful tapestry weekend bag and an authentic 1950s nurses cape with the original embroidery inside saying Bolton Hospital. Rachel is a nurse so she just had to get it 🙂  


Anna found this gorgeous brooch, perfect for her vintage ball gown that she snapped up at our last vintage fair trip. She paid an excellent £3 for it.. Happy days Anna. Anna went slightly over budget by buying two teapots/ coffee pots and bagging a set of bowls, plates and cups with one of the teapots all for £6.  Best bargain of the day me thinks… Her Midwinter teapot on the right was from snygg-cool vintage for contemporary living.  Here she is with her teapots, a very happy lady and underneath her lovely broach. 



Then there was Ciara who did very well, finding this fabulous gypsy, Romany style teapot for £3. I love love love this:-) Ciara and Anna live in the same flat so there will be lots of teapots there. Ronan will be pleased girls 🙂 


Last but not least there is me… I stumbled across this amazing hat after about 10mins.. I loved it at first sight. When I picked it up, I couldn’t believe it was only £4.50!! woohoo… It was from Vintage Cyprus, a stall definitely worth a peek at if you at Vintage Village next month. So so pleased with it, I wore it there and then.. Think it might be slightly too small as have a little headache from it now but hey sometimes a woman has to suffer for the love of vintage. Hehe… 


There may have been one extra buy from me, a Susie Cooper teapot, for just £2!! but shhhh don’t tell anyone. It was from the lovely Laura at Planet Vintage Girl 🙂 I simply could not resist. You will have to wait for a future post to see that one though. 

Until next time, happy vintage hunting and ladies thank you for a lovely afternoon. Love and hugs, 

Olive & Emxxxx

A quick look at Christmas…..


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Goodness me, it has been a while… doesn’t life get busy sometimes!! I guess this is good time of year to slow down and catch up with all those things that you love to do.  This is of course one of the things I love to do, but just not had a moment to recently. Today’s post is just a little peek into Christmas for me this year, only a few pics. 

So I’m sitting here with the candles going watching films and munching on all the sweeties we have had, curtsy of my lovely pupils at school 🙂 Perfect Christmas time relaxation. How have your Christmas’s been? Good I hope and filled with lots of happy memories. 

So here we go….

Lets start with my Christmas makes this year… making is definitely going to be a bigger part of 2013. I feel so relaxed when I’m making and it’s so important to relax.

CIMG2309After visiting Germany with school earlier in December, one of the teachers I went with was also into making and craft and suggested we buy some cinnamon sticks and ribbon and make a creative candle with it. This was my attempt above.  The felt button decoration below was made at our Christmas make group. I love the red theme that comes out at Christmas, red and white to be exact. It’s not the neatest of decorations but I like it 🙂 You should have seen one of the makers made a Rudolph face, it was so cute. 

CIMG2310My final Christmas make comes in the form of our advent calendar. I have to say it didn’t really get used very much as it’s hard to find sweeties that fit in the match boxes. Also when it is you that fills the boxes each morning, it kind of looses it’s excitement in opening – you know what is inside!! hehe.. Both this idea and the button Christmas decoration came from the fabulous Homes and Antiques magazine. If you do not yet read it, you must 🙂 



Here are a few pics of our decorations and some of the lovely gifts I was given 🙂 I’m a very lucky girl. I’d love to hear about your Christmas celebrations. Lots of our decorations this year come from Germany, like the stockings hanging on the side of the fireplace. The tree was filled with so many beautiful miniature decorations. Authentic German markets are a must. 



CIMG2318And a couple of my pressies..


CIMG2322Happy Christmas fellow vintage lovers.. Enjoy the celebrations. 

Much love

Olive& Emxxx



Making Mania…



It really has been too long… My life seems to have been taken over by my new job. I am totally loving it however by the time I get home from school finding the energy to write a blog post seems to have escaped me these last few weeks. Anyway tonight, with Theo out at band practise, it’s my turn to catch up on a little bit of Emily time 🙂 Just been reading some of my fav blogs to get me back in the vintage flow and here I am.

So I wanted to share with you a little glimpse into a lovely evening I had, last week, with some of the Ivy Fallowfield girls. For those of you who know me well, you will know that Theo and I have moved back into Fallowfield to be living in the community to try to best serve the church that we are part of. I love living in the heart of Fallowfield, well not too close to the revellers, so that we can be near the students and residents of the church we have planted here. 

One thing that I have started up is Fallowfield Make Group. It’s an informal evening where fellow makers and craft lovers get together to hang out, eat treats, drink hot drinks and make something. Our first event saw us making cards. My late grandma on my dad’s side left me lots of card making bits and pieces and what better way to use it than to share it out. So there were four of us in the end and we shared out all our bits and pieces, each bringing to the table what we had at home. It was so much fun and it is a great way to get lots of different people together. 

Check out all our supplies.. sequins, ribbon, buttons, fabric.. so so much fun 🙂 

Here is the making in progress….


Naomi successfully using the transfers, I can never do this… however we do now have a permanent transfer on our table cloth now.. hehe, a fond reminder of a fab night.

And here are the end results… 

Our next Fallowfield make group will be in December, we’ll be making button Christmas decks so if you fancy it and live near by give me a shout. 

Anyone made anything crafty recently? or fancy setting up your own make group? It’s simple, find a place, some friends who like craft and pool your resources, make things and make friends. Our next challenge is to invite some of our neighbours 🙂 

Much vintage love

Olive & Emxxxx





A little bit of vintage glamour…



It wasn’t really a little bit of glamour, it was lots of glamour, a whole vintage bus load of glamour in fact that filled Matt and Phreds a few Wednesday evenings ago. Of course this was for the Vintage Manchester, Best of Vintage Awards 2012. The evening is something that I have been chatting on about and coaxing for you to vote for me for a while now so here is a little write-up of the night. Thank you so so much for all your votes you lovely lot. It meant so so much to be a finalist with so many amazing Vintage businesses. I have to say a huge thank you to Helen over at Mancunian Vintage as I have shamelessly had to steal her photos from the night to illustrate just a little what we got up to.

So it all started with the choosing of the outfit. Vintage Hollywood glamour was the order of the evening so I delved through the wardrobe, there were a number of options but the winner was my 1980s outfit, however I like to think that the white dress has a little bit of a Marilyn inspiration to it. I added the very 80s hat as seen in a previous post. Theo bless him wanted to enter into the spirit of things so on the day of the event nipped out and found this fabulous velvet Dicky Bow:-) With the vintage hair we attempted to look like a true vintager pair, we both loved the dressing up side of things and have vowed to do it more often. Not worrying what people think,, that’s what vintage is all about, expressing yourselves 🙂

The night was a huge huge success 🙂 Sue, of Vintage Manchester did such an amazing job at organising. We had a reading from a revised and modern version of the Great Gatsby and brilliant entertainment with a fabulous Marilyn tribute act. Although Olive and Em did not win Best Vintage New Comer we had such a fabulous night and the winners were all so so worthy of their awards. Huge well done.

The evening was topped off by being surrounded by so much vintage loveliness and by people who appreciated true style. We had the pleasure of spending the evening with Helen of Mancunian Vintage and her boyfriend having met her half way through the evening. Theo was urging me to go up and say hello, which I finally did 🙂 Check out her fabulous outfit, she looked gorgeous in a fabulous and very hollywood styled outfit.





The Teapots and we went out to play….



Huge apologies for my long silence on here.. things have been a little crazy in the Olive & Em household. My lovely hubby got knocked off his bike 😦  He is on the mend now but was a nasty shock and sent me into nurse gear. That mixed with a very very busy period at my new job and I have had very little time to come on here. So thank you to all those who have been having a peek throughout my silence. I’m back on it now. There is so much to fill you in on, some of the things I’ve been up to I’ve posted pics on twitter today to update people, however I wanted to just pop up a quick post about a lovely lovely wedding we went to, about a month ago 🙂 

Not only did I get to try out my new vintage hat that I bought at the recent Manchester Vintage Fashion and Textiles fair but the Olive & Em teapots came out to play too. The lovely bride and groom are great friends of ours and Rachel, the bride, asked to use the teapots. I jumped at the chance. She filled them with a beautiful mixture of pink vintage roses and wild flowers which just totally suited the teapots. Have a little peek at the pics, they just look gorgeous 🙂  


Opps apologies for the cropped mini teapot, it seems to have not included the whole pic but you get the idea.



If you would like to use the teapots for any event you have coming up, please have a little look at the prices and terms and conditions page for details of hire. I would love to hear from you 🙂 

So here’s what I wore to the day… The dress is actually a dress I wear to work, as the wedding was on a Friday I nipped straight from work and just added the vintage hat and handbag to finish off the look 🙂 The hat was a find at the recent Manchester and Vintage Textiles fair. It’s a 1980’s orginal, I just love the veil and navy blue seems to be my favourite colour at the moment. Did you know also that the elastic on these hats sits behind your head to hold it on, I never knew that. The hat was a bargain at just £10. 


I really want to wear the hat to the Vintage Manchester Best of Vintage Northwest Awards this Wednesday but not sure what to wear it with.. eeeck, any advice, do you think it’s hollywood glamour enough? Huge thank you again to all those who voted for Olive & Em for best vintage newcomer for the awards by the way, I’ll keep you posted 🙂 

Happy vintage hunting and much love,

Olive & Emxxxx

A little favour to ask for your vote, one last time :-)

I just want to start by saying a HUGE thank you to all of my readers who voted for me, the first time, for the Vintage Manchester Best of Vintage 2012 awards. Due to your help and your votes I have managed to become a finalist for the awards and the Best Vintage Newcomer category. Yay 🙂

So now I need your help again, please could you vote for me one last time to see if I can win the category?? Thank you:-)

It means the world to me that I have even been nominated and there is some seriously stiff competition so we will see. Anyway I LOVE Olive & Em I really do. I love the blogging side of it, I love sharing with like-minded people and most of all I love to share my lovely Olive & Em crockery with so many people. A box is ready and waiting upstairs for a friend’s wedding on Friday. I can not wait to see what the flowers are going to look like, they are going to be her centre pieces 🙂  I honestly can not thank you all enough for helping me out with this awesome opportunity.

So for one last time please pop me a little vote, Olive & Em the best vintage newcomer, using the following link:

Vintage Manchester Best of Vintage 2012 Awards

Thank you again and happy vintage hunting.

Lots of love

Olive & Emxxxx

The lost art of living in the moment..

Did you know, it has been now just over a year since I started blogging and started in the crockery hire business. Wow, time really does fly and just under x40 blog posts later I figured that I would write something a little different. I spend a lot of my time on here talking about the things that I buy, vintage things that I do to my home, what I make and style. This is all well and good but only a small part of who I am. I think in this diverse world of blogging and online interactions it’s always good to reveal a little more and share something else about my life with my readers.

So vintage is a big part of who I am, it certainly helps to make up my identity. However, the largest thing that makes me who I am, is my faith. Some of you may know, some of you may not, however I do hope this doesn’t make people hit the cross button when they read this. This post isn’t really about God per say and is a practice I am learning which can be applied by a person of faith or by an atheist. It’s about living in the moment.

I am a sucker for filling the diary, rushing around trying to fit everybody and everything in, I know so many women are like this. I guess a part of me wanted to please people and do all the things that were “expected” of me. I realised however that it was only me that was expecting these things, no one else, not my friends, my family or my husband. It was frustrating me not being able to do everything I wanted to do and making me almost angry and not enjoy the amazing things that are in my life. I have realised in this past year that pleasing people is not the answer as in the end it makes a frazzled and very tired Emily, this Emily is not fun and not the person I knew I wanted to be, or God wanted me to be in fact.

So I did a lot of soul-searching, I read a lot of books ( one in particular about an atheist woman’s time spent with the Amish) – I know now you really think I’m weird, but stick with me!! I prayed and I stepped back from my life. I made countless lists, I know many of you are smiling at this as you do it too, lists of priorities as I began to realise that I needed to eradicate from my life the things that weren’t necessary, the things that perhaps I was doing because I thought I had to. I realised that I had to learn to say no to things and to people as we can not do everything. In such a fast paced world it is almost expected, especially as women, that we be all things for all people. It really doesn’t have to be that way. So I really thought about what was important; husband, family and community ( my friends) and worked out creative and fun ways to be with them whilst still tapping into my passions. This is all a working progress by the way, by no means conquered completely!!

Another thing that has really hit me recently is the importance of doing one thing at a time. I know this sounds incredibly obvious but really, especially at work, I was trying to juggle so many plates. I was doing it in my social life too and to be honest I felt like they were about to come crashing down on my head. It’s not about just doing one thing at a time though, I am in the process of working out how to live in the moment, doing that thing, whatever it may be and giving my whole focus to it. So be it washing up the dishes or answering work emails. I don’t try to wash up and make a mental list of all the other things I have to do, or wash up and try to clean the entire kitchen at the same time. I wash up and try to actually enjoy washing up, standing there and taking it in rather than rushing through to the next thing. I know your reading this thinking I have gone a bit loopy but it doesn’t just apply to washing up, apply it to everything that you just do in life. It starts to make the whole task a whole lot more fun and interesting too rather than just something to tick off on the tick list!!  

I guess what I have been trying to say in a nutshell is I am learning what is important. My conclusions so far are family and community are at the heart of who I am, people make me happy, chatting on the phone to family and friends, being creative makes me happy, walking and being in creation makes me happy, chatting over a hot squash ( in a vintage tea cup) and cake makes me happy so I am making time for those things in my life. I am also enjoying what I am doing as I am doing it, from the mundane to the amazing holiday times, when we live and enjoy each moment, cherishing EVERYTHING that we do, life feels more grounded and content, the way I would believe, God intended it to be.

My new pride and joy :-)


As some of you may be aware the hubby and I have moved house this summer. We are renting and had the exciting task of making a pretty much empty shell into a vintage inspired home. The house came with some basic pieces of furniture but there really has been lots of room for us to add our own personal touches. So so exciting. We are still adding bits here and there. I honestly think that vintage home ware may have taken over the love of vintage fashion. Don’t get me wrong I still LOVE creating vintage outfits, but I think that I must be getting older hehe.. I’m becoming a little vintage housewife. Is it wrong to have started to enjoy my little cleaning couple of hours every week as I sproose up the house? There is something very satisfying about seeing a sparkling house, a real sense of achievement… Maybe I’m on my own on this one.

Anyway back to the reason for this post, my new pride and joy. So at the beginning of the hols Mr. B and I poodled round to the local furniture charity shop, St. Ann’s Hospice. We went with a bookcase on our shopping list. Our bookcase is a sorry attempt from Argos, put up by myself over 3 years ago. It wabbles very precariously when you touch it and has no back. Well anyway we arrived and there outside stood a beautiful Bureau. Again, Mother I know I always say this but this really is true, I have ALWAYS wanted a bureau. As someone who is OBSESSED with stationery, the little drawers and alcoves for letters and bits and pieces get me very excited. I know I am very sad but hey, it’s the small simple things in life that make me happy, best way to be in my mind.

So after a little deliberation, by which I mean me convincing myself and Theo that the bookcase is fine just the way it is and I am sure that it will be ok. I just won’t store too many books on it! We squeezed it into the car and hey presto I had my bureau. We have popped it in the spare room. It stores lots of craft bits, notebooks full of vintage loveliness, books and generally lots of bits and pieces that make me happy. So have a little look for yourself. Oh forgot to mention, it was an absolute bargain at £25 and in such good condition. The only fault is the slight paint mark on the side but no one notices that.. Happy days…

And inside in all its glory…

More of my bits and pieces…

And inside the drawers… My craft things has their very own drawers.

Happy Vintage hunting.

Lots of Love

Olive& Em xxx

A little piece of history.. vintage postcards


Just a quick little post to share with you the gorgeous vintage post cards that I picked up when I was on my trip to Normandy in France. I had read an article about vintage post cards in the fabulous Homes & Antiques and came across some lovely and incredibly unique originals when I was wandering round one of Normandy’s quaint sleepy little towns.

The Homes and Antiques article taught me that sending post cards became all the rage at the turn of the 20th century. With the early 1900’s being a period where the rich wanted to share their holidays with the world. Of course not only were they sharing their holidays but also their wealth and prestige, they could actually afford to go on holiday. This created a huge boom in sending post cards and post card manufacturing.

The post cards below are pretty old, dating back to what I think says 1905 and 1907 so they are from the beginning of the boom period. The handwriting suggests a lady has written them. I just fell in love with the gorgeous and intricate designs. They are protected by a plastic cover and are in fantastic condition but very delicate. I am unsure of their worth, they probably are worth very little however I really feel that I have picked up a little bit of history here. My next job is to translate what they say. I just love that I can now share in this lady’s adventure. I promise to look after them and keep them very safe.

So without further a do, have a little look at my little piece of history…

Here’s what was on the back….

And a closer look at the post mark shows… it’s either 05 or 06.. any guesses?

And my other little find.. This one is my favourite of the two.